After two days of fantastic storytelling in Naples, the Davis Cup quarter-final tie between Great Britain and Italy will culminate on Day 3, with the final two singles rubbers scheduled to take place on Sunday afternoon. There is the potential for one of those rubbers to be a dead one, as all eyes will be on British No. 1 Andy Murray as he attempts to secure a semi-final spot for the Great Britain team for the first time in 33 years. With a 2-1 lead heading into the third day, a Murray victory in his rubber against Italian No. 1 Fabio Fognini would secure the feat for GB. Check out the Murray vs Fognini H2H matches.
This marks the third time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, with the head-to-head series tied at 1-1. They have not crossed paths on the professional tour since 2009, which will add to the overall intrigue of the match tomorrow.
Following their unlucky opening day in the tie, Great Brtain recovered from a 0-1 deficit, when Murray finished his previously suspended match against Seppi 6-4, 7-5, 6-3, before being called for doubles duty alongside fellow Scot Colin Fleming. The pair would then defeat the team of Fognii and Simone Bolelli in four sets to win the doubles tie 6-4 6-2 3-6 7-5 and give themselves the 2-1 leading heading into Day 3. While Murray has been vocal about the state of the clay court in Naples, he has managed to play some fantastic tennis to lift his team one step closer to the semi-final.
Italian No. 1 Fabio Fognini has gone above and beyond this week in Naples, as he is playing with the risk of agitating a left quad injury he sustained several weeks back. Although an MRI scan deemed him fit to compete, he has now played both a singles and a doubles tie, and will be the first contestant on court tomorrow as well. While clay courts have proven to be his most comfortable surface, Fognini will need to find his best tennis tomorrow if he is to topple the world No. 8.
This marks the third time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, with the series tied at 1-1. They have not met on the professional tour since 2009, when Murray defeated Fognini in Monte Carlo. The Italian’s victory over Murray came back in 2007, and will likely not factor into the match tomorrow afternoon. While Fognini is supposedly the more comfortable player on clay, Murray has already defeated him on that surface, which will play a part in the match-up on Sundat afternoon.
Prediction: Andy Murray in Four Sets